section 487.1(7)

INTRODUCTION AND BRIEF DESCRIPTION

A peace officer must provide a facsimile of a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication before entering or as soon as possible after entering the place or premises to be searched.

SECTION WORDING

487.1(7) A peace officer who executes a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication, other than a warrant issued pursuant to subsection 256(1), shall, before entering the place or premises to be searched or as soon as practicable thereafter, give a facsimile of the warrant to any person present and ostensibly in control of the place or premises.

EXPLANATION

Section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada outlines the procedures a peace officer must follow when executing a warrant issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication, with the exception of a warrant issued pursuant to subsection 256(1). The section requires that before entering the place or premises to be searched, or as soon as practicable after entering, the peace officer must provide a facsimile of the warrant to any person ostensibly in control of the place or premises. This section is significant because it ensures that any person who is present and ostensibly in control of the place or premises being searched is made aware of the warrant and the authority of the peace officer to conduct the search. It provides such a person with a copy of the warrant, indicating the scope and limitations of the search, and enabling them to assess whether the search is lawful or not. Additionally, the provision imposes an obligation on the peace officer to provide the facsimile of the warrant to the person as soon as possible, thereby minimizing confusion and any potential conflict that may arise during the search. This is essential as it ensures that the search is conducted safely and efficiently, without causing unnecessary harm or risk to the officer, the person being searched, or any other persons present. Overall, this section of the Criminal Code safeguards the rights of individuals and ensures that all searches are carried out in accordance with the law. By requiring the warrant to be provided to any person ostensibly in control of the premises being searched, it promotes transparency, accountability, and fairness in the administration of justice.

COMMENTARY

Section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a vital component of the legislation surrounding search warrants. It refers specifically to warrants issued by telephone or other means of telecommunication, excluding those issued under subsection 256(1). This section places an obligation on the peace officer executing the warrant to provide a facsimile of it to any person present and ostensibly in control of the premises to be searched before entering or as soon as practicable afterwards. The purpose of this provision is to ensure that individuals whose premises are being searched are made aware of the basis for the search and the authority under which it is being carried out. It is important to note that this provision only applies to warrants executed by telephone or other means of telecommunication, such as email, and does not apply to warrants executed in person. There are several reasons why this provision is necessary. One of the biggest concerns is ensuring that individuals subjected to a search are aware of their rights. Everyone has the right to be secure from unreasonable search and seizure, and this right is enshrined in section 8 of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms. By providing a facsimile of the warrant, individuals can easily access information about the basis for the search and can better understand their rights during the process. Additionally, providing a facsimile of the warrant is an important safeguard against abuse of police powers. It ensures that officers cannot exceed the scope of the warrant or search areas that are not authorized by the warrant. It also helps to prevent confusion or misunderstandings about the scope of the warrant, which can help prevent disputes and legal challenges. While the provision is designed to protect the rights of individuals, it also recognizes the practical limitations of executing warrants by telephone or other means of telecommunication. Because officers are not physically present to provide a physical copy of the warrant, it is especially important to provide a facsimile to ensure that individuals are aware of the basis for the search. By doing so, officers can help ensure that any evidence obtained during the search will stand up to the scrutiny of the court. In conclusion, section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada is a crucial aspect of search warrant legislation. By requiring peace officers to provide a facsimile of the warrant to any person present and ostensibly in control of the place or premises to be searched, this provision helps to protect the rights of individuals and prevent abuse of police powers. It is an important safeguard that ensures the integrity of the search and the evidence obtained during the process.

STRATEGY

Section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada lays out a vital obligation for peace officers executing a warrant issued through telephone or any other form of telecommunication. Before entering the place or premises to be searched, a facsimile of the warrant must be given to any person present and ostensibly in control of the said place or premises. This measure exists to ensure transparency, accountability, and fairness in the execution of search warrants, regardless of how they were issued. When dealing with this section of the Criminal Code of Canada, there are several strategic considerations that law enforcement officers should be aware of. First and foremost, they must ensure that they have properly obtained and verified the warrant's authenticity, as there is an increased risk of fraud or miscommunication when warrants are issued through telecommunication. Secondly, they must make sure that they have the correct location to be searched as there are possibilities that the telephone number registered for the location searched might not match the location's actual address. Moreover, they must also be aware of potential threats to their safety or the safety of others, as they may face confrontations if the warrant is perceived to be invalid, or if the person in control of the premises finds the search's scope to be too broad. Given these concerns, several strategies can be employed by law enforcement officers to ensure that they are complying with the requirements of section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada. Firstly, they should make sure that all necessary information regarding the warrant, its execution, and any specific requirements outlined therein are clearly communicated to all members of the team involved in executing the warrant. This communication will help ensure that everyone involved knows exactly what is expected of them and is aware of the potential risks and challenges associated with the search. Secondly, officers should undertake thorough background checks of the individuals involved in the said premises to identify any potential threats to their safety. To ensure that the correct location is issued, or the correct telephone number is identified, officers might choose to call ahead of time to confirm the location, owner name, and any prior warrants, if any. Thirdly, officers must make sure that the warrant is valid, authentic, and that the scope of the search is appropriately authorized before entering the location. This step ensures that the warrant properly aligns with the parameters under which it was issued. Lastly, officers must exercise impartiality, sound judgment, and respect human rights in the execution of search warrants issued through telecommunication. This strategic consideration will aid in minimizing the likelihood of any lawsuits or allegations of impropriety, ensuring that officers are acting within the law, and strengthening their bond with the community. In conclusion, Section 487.1(7) of the Criminal Code of Canada sets out a critical requirement for peace officers executing warrants issued through telecommunication. To comply with these requirements, law enforcement officers must exercise prudent judgment, be diligent in checking the warrant's authenticity, and respect human rights in their execution. Using these strategies will aid in reducing potential risks and pitfalls, improving the search's efficiency, and protection of lawful activities.